The New Mexico Lobos were not even expected to make the field of 64 for the NCAA tournament, but they did and nearly upset No. 1 seeded and regional host Arizona State Friday night. The game was a pitching dual with the Lobos leading 2-0 in the eighth inning, but then fell apart in the eighth and ninth to allow Arizona State to advance. New Mexico starting pitcher Rudy Jaramillo gave up his second earned run to start the ninth and was then pulled for Gera Sanchez who had a tough night.
Sanchez had a passed ball that allowed runners to advance to second and third with one out, and in my opinion he should have intentionally walked ldesignated hitter Joey DeMichele. to load the bases and allow a force out at any base. DeMichele was 1-4 on the night so it was not a terrible idea to pitch to him, but with only one out the intentional walk seemed to be the better move looking back. DeMichele then hit a walk-off three-run home run for the Sun Devils to win 4-2 and move on to face Charlotte who upset Arkansas in the afternoon game.
Both starting pitchers had great games New Mexico starting pitcher Rudy Jaramillo went eight innings, allowing two earned runs, four hits and had four strike outs. However, he allowed the tying run on base and was replaced. The Arizona State starting pitcher was Brady Rodgers who also pitched eight innings and gave up two runs, but he did strike out 10 Lobo batters.
New Mexico is now facing elimination as they take on Arkansas.
Here is Saturday's schedule for the Tempe Region: (times are ET):